Saturday, November 12, 2016

Ebb and Flow

Perhaps this sounds familiar to you.

Sometimes, for one day or one week or one month or one year, creativity flows through your veins. And then...


That's how I'm feeling this week. Every time I sit down to create, I make a mess. In times of stress, it can be hard to let those creative juices ferment and make lovely Cabernet instead of vinegar.

There are two helpful strategies for times like this. 1) Clean and reorganize supplies, and purge. 2) Make something extremely simple.

So yesterday, I set about reorganizing and cleaning my craft space. It needed refreshing, and so do I. This will take another few days to complete, seeing as my craft "space" spills into our unfinished storage area where a whole bunch of stuff sits awaiting purge or reintroduction to the stash. It's satisfying.

And today, in between cleaning jobs, I made something very simple. Fortunately, my birthday is coming up. The big 5-0. That means I'll need to send some thank-you notes and didn't have any in my stash. The Hero Arts Shakespearean Poetry set was on my desk, and it occurred to me that I've not made single-panel note cards in a long time. So here you go.

You can't get much easier than this. Cut standard sheets into quarters, add a stamp at the top of each panel, and you're done. The handwritten note will go underneath (in black ink), I'll slide the panel into an envelope, and thanks will be given.

Don't fight the ebb and flow. Roll with it.

What do you do when the creativity dries up? Please share in the comments!

stamps: Hero Arts Shakespearean Poetry
ink: Archival vermilion
paper: Papertrey white
accessories: none at all


  1. That's a great idea. When my inspiration has seemed to dry up I usually walk away from my craft area for a while. And now that you have told me what re-organizing and purging can do I think I'll begin a journey through my stamps and reacquaint myself with them. I visit your blog every day. You never disappoint. Thanks.

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  3. When I am out of inspiration, I try to sit down and do something mundane (cut paper into the size I use for cards, stamp some motifs to color in later, organize my stickers/stamps/sequins), and normally inspiration will come to me after handling/fondling my craft stuff for a while. If that doesn´t work I will go find my knitting. That never fails me :)

  4. Like Lynda I leave my craftroom alone and go outside - or bake cookies or get my knitting or meet friends - just anything nice.
    Crafting is my hobby, so I am not obligated to produce things. It´s supposed to be relaxing, inspirational and fun :O)

    But you tip, Susan, to clean and clear things up in my crafting area helps me to get back to having lots of fun with paper and colours.

    Thanks for your writing - it is always very inspirational for me.

    Greetings from Germany,

  5. I have a folder on my computer that's labeled "Simplicity–Inspiration." In it I save, as jpgs, examples of your cards that inspire me. So when I can't think of a card design, I look through those jpgs to get an idea. As inspiration, it works every time. I don't/can't make a card exactly like yours (wouldn't be possible!), but it often gives me ideas to use with my supplies. Thanks for my folder! Better than any book....

  6. I, too, walk away from my craft room....a breather is refreshing! I also go through my stash of stamps, dies, cards in waiting, accessories, etc. Cleaning out my Pinterest Boards is helpful too. ALWAYS find something I'd forgotten about, which often starts my juices flowing again!

  7. I go on pinterest and actually make some cards that inspired me. That gets the mojo running again.

  8. I usually stop all together, or do something totally different. Of course I don't make as many cards as you do, so I go in spurts. I made most of my holiday cards in August this year, since then just an occasional birthday card. Just started knitting again, which is very relaxing (at least at the level of knitting I do).

  9. If my creativity is gone and I must make something then I copy something I've made before and often along the way I'll change something up and that seems to get the creative juices rolling again. I also find rummaging through my stash to be a good way to get a jump start too.

    My thing is that sometimes the creativity is there but the talent isn't... like I forget how to stamp, can't cut, measure, color, put colors together or do anything right.

  10. What do I do when I need inspiration? I look at Susan Raihala's beautiful blog again (because I've already admired everything the first time around). It always works!

  11. Happy early birthday Susan. Today is my 60th. Sigh, smile. Those birthdays come around whether you want them or not. This one hasn't been too bad actually. I hope yours is a good one.

    I would love to meet you in person some day. I already feel like I know you. It would be fun to have a blogger weekend; with all of our favorite card bloggers and some fun card making.

    I do the same thing you do when I am not feeling particularly creative. I clean my craft room. I have a basket of rejects and leftovers. Usually by the time I have cleaned up and tossed stuff in there; I challenge myself to use something in the basket. Sometimes it works; and sometimes it doesn't. But it never hurts to try.


Thank you so much for taking time to comment!